HARTFORD CITY, Ind. — Family and friends of 74-year-old Jerry "Jake" Michael and five-year-old Jenson Reynolds gathered outside the Blackford County Courthouse Thursday morning, calling for justice to be served as the woman alleged to have driven through a home and killed them faced reckless homicide charges in court.
Brandi Bare appeared virtually in Blackford County Superior Court Thursday morning, joining her initial hearing from the Blackford County Security Center.
Outside, those who knew and loved Jake and Jenson carried signs with their faces, reading "Justice for Jenson" and "Justice for our loved ones, Jenson, Papaw Jake and Emma," and wearing shirts that say "I stand with those who can't."
Court documents say that Bare was driving under the influence on Thursday, June 2, 2022 when she drove her car off the road and through the back of Michael's Montpelier home, crashing through to the front porch, seriously injuring multiple people and killing Jake and Jenson in the process.
Bare is facing seven charges including causing death and injury when operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, reckless homicide and resisting law enforcement.
Bare's bond was initially set at $5,000. A motion to increase her bond was filed after community protests that the bond was too low – given the serious nature of the incident.
Jenson's father, Jerod Reynolds, who was also injured in the wreck, said more needs to be done to hold Bare accountable for her actions.
"It's absolutely pathetic," Reynolds said. "Telling me my kid ain't worth more than $5,000 is just absurd. I mean, I guarantee you if she walked by here and I done something stupid, I'm getting way more than a $5,000 bond when she isn't worth more than a dollar."
Reynolds said they want to see action taken by the county in this case to make sure Bare won't be able to hurt anyone else ever again, saying the family and the community will not forget.
On Thursday, the judge increased Bare's bond to $50,000.